BAY AREA VA SPECIALIST
I’m here to Serve Those Who Have Served and Sacrificed for US!
Some of the Great Features of VA Loans Include:
- Ensure that all veterans are given an equal opportunity to buy homes with VA assistance, without regard to their race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin
- No down payment (unless required by the lender, the purchase price is more than the reasonable value of the property as determined by VA, or the loan is made with graduated payment features)
- A competitive fixed interest rate
- Limits on closing costs
- Right to prepay without penalty
- No monthly Mortgage Insurance (MI), an additional monthly payment, which is required by FHA loans or loans w/ a down payment of less than 20%
What the VA Program Cannot Do
GUARANTEE THAT THE HOUSE YOU BUY, WHETHER IT IS NEW OR PREVIOUSLY OCCUPIED, WILL BE FREE OF DEFECTS. It is in your best interest to seek expert advice BEFORE you legally commit yourself in a purchase agreement, particularly if you have any doubts about the condition of the house. GET INSPECTIONS, which are required by the lender, and prepare the seller to make any necessary repairs. VA guarantees only the loan, NOT the condition of the property. It is your responsibility to be an informed buyer and assure yourself that what you are buying is satisfactory to you in all respects. I’m here to help you through this process.
You must have suitable credit, sufficient income, and a valid Certificate of Eligibility (COE) to be eligible for a VA-guaranteed home loan. And you must occupy the home as your primary place of residence. To view the eligibility requirements to obtain a COE.
Most mortgage lenders will have the forms and other necessary paperwork to apply for a certificate of eligibility and for the loan and will help you fill them out.
What Else Do I Need To Know?
- The overall physical condition of the property will be a huge factor in obtaining a loan. If not already completed by the seller, the lender will require that the borrower get and submit the results of a pest inspection investigation. Once the lender receives the report, they will send back a list of required repairs to be completed prior to issuing a loan commitment. The object here is to get the seller to play ball and make those repairs in an acceptable workmanship and in an expeditious manner.
- Working farms, investment properties and fixers are not for this loan program.
- Like FHA, there are a limited number of Condominium complexes that qualify under this program. To search for an approved condo nearest you.
Is It Really Zero Down?
Not quite! Although you get to come in w/ no money down to purchase the property, there will still be fees that you’ll have to pay to close the deal. And the VA regulates those closing costs that a veteran may be charged in connection with closing a VA loan.
Some of the fees associated with closing VA loans include; VA appraisal, credit report, title insurance, recording fees, prorated taxes, padding your impound account, homeowner’s insurance policy, discount points, etc.
Additionally, and in most cases, Veterans using the VA Home Loan Guaranty benefit must pay a funding fee. The VA funding fee is calculated as a percentage of the total loan amount. It must be paid or rolled into the loan at closing time. VA strongly recommends that you verify with your lender that the funding fee matches your military service.
In 2020, the VA loan funding fee for an active duty first-time borrower is increased to 2.30% and the subsequent use fee is set at 3.60%.
If a first-time borrower puts down 5%, then the funding fee is decreased to 1.65% for the first and subsequent purchase. If the down payment is 10%, then the funding fee is decreased to 1.40% for the first and subsequent purchase. More info can be found atVA funding fee and loan closing costs.
The Following do NOT pay the VA funding fee:
- Veteran receiving VA compensation for a service-connected disability;
- Veteran entitled to receive VA compensation for a service-connected disability, but receives retirement pay or active service pay;
- Surviving spouse of a Veteran who died in active service or from a service-connected disability;
- Service member on Active Duty who provides, on or before date of loan closing, evidence of having been awarded the Purple Heart.
Other VA loan funding fees are increased too; higher fees may apply for VA refinanced loans and other transactions. There is some exclusion.
The purpose of the funding fees are to reduce the loan's cost to taxpayers considering that a VA loan requires no down payment and has no monthly mortgage insurance. The funding fee is a percentage of the loan amount which varies based on the type of loan and your military category, if you are a first-time or subsequent loan user, and whether you make a down payment. You have the option to finance the VA funding fee or pay it in cash, but the funding fee must be paid at closing time.
Beginning the VA Buying Process
It’s very important to find a real estate professional, who has the experience, knowledge & expertise to guide you in finding the right property, get you into contract, and bring your purchase to a successful close. Not just any real estate agent can handle a VA client or the closing process. In fact, many agents are not familiar with the VA loan variables, scared of the no money down program, and are too scared to explore unfamiliar territory.
I have worked with many Service members, Veterans and their families to successfully get them the home they want. And I have the knowledge and expertise to guide you from the purchase, to getting your keys! I have a great, hardworking team of lenders and other professionals, whom are experienced with the nuances of the VA loan requirements to get your home closed quickly, generally between 21-30 days!
Beginning the VA Buying Process
Effective January, 1st, 2020, no!
The Blue Water Navy Veterans Act of 2019 removed the caps for the new year. But military members on active duty and veterans will still need to qualify for the mortgage and verify they can afford the monthly payments. This may open up opportunities previously untouchable to VA buyers in the Bay Area.
Under the new rules, vets can get a loan amount in what they can qualify for and are not bound by city caps. Banks can still put in some restrictions to protect themselves against defaults. For example, some lenders may require higher credit scores or debt-to-income ratios in qualifying for the loans, realtor.com® reports. The loans likely will only apply to a borrower’s primary residence too.
Where Can I Get More Information about the VA Home Loan Program?
Please check in here on the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Website.
Do You Have a Recommendation of an Approved VA Mortgage Lender?
Absolutely! Please contact me for a list of VA lenders that I work closely with and have together successfully closed many VA loans.